Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

From circuitbending to homebrew stompboxes & synths, keep the DIY spirit alive!
JenniferG
Ultra Wiggler
Posts: 969
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2016 5:26 pm

Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by JenniferG »

I only have the Tektronix 2225 and it'd be handy to have one that can actually capture the data.

For audio DIY work, how much deep memory storage would one want? How many channels? Megahertz? Trying to figure this out.. there's so many scopes out there to choose from!

I can spend anywhere from $250 to $500 I guess. For $299 I can get a Sigilent 14M deep memory dual channel scope.


I guess I should get a 100mhz scope? In case I needed to troubleshoot anything related to an MCU on a audio module? I think the STM32 runs at 72mhz or so?

I'm so clueless. All I know is my analogue scope is limited. The newer ones are so much easier to use and learn with perhaps. I really like the storage thing.. I was trying to see the bouncing of switches on my analog scope and found out you need a storage scope to see that.

I feel so stupid.. lol.. so I guess I need the easiest scope to learn with :)
JenniferG
Ultra Wiggler
Posts: 969
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2016 5:26 pm

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by JenniferG »

Wow I better grab that Siglent above.. It's deep memory and only $287! It's like $100 off. Look at the following chart of price history on amazon:

Image

I should grab it?
User avatar
Barm Cake
Common Wiggler
Posts: 215
Joined: Wed Nov 17, 2021 3:02 pm
Location: Scotland

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by Barm Cake »

I got a Rigol DS1054z with software bundle included. I think it has a memory depth of 24Mpts. It’s my first proper scope so I have nothing to compare to that is standalone like this scope. It is easy to learn, everything is laid out logically. Only thing is I kind of regret not going for one of the S plus models with waveform/signal generator and 70Mhz upwards. However the 1054 is more than adequate for my needs, though I don’t ever work with the kind of signals you work with.

Apologies, the following links take you to the UK Rigol distributor.

https://www.rigol-uk.co.uk/product/rig ... illoscope/
https://www.rigol-uk.co.uk/product/rig ... mso-ready/
JenniferG
Ultra Wiggler
Posts: 969
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2016 5:26 pm

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by JenniferG »

I bought it. It seems good. Has long return period, up until Jan 31, if I don't like it. But I usually don't buy stuff unless I really think it'll be a good deal. Seems like it does quite a bit.
JenniferG
Ultra Wiggler
Posts: 969
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2016 5:26 pm

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by JenniferG »

Barm Cake wrote: Wed Nov 23, 2022 3:58 pm I got a Rigol DS1054z with software bundle included. I think it has a memory depth of 24Mpts. It’s my first proper scope so I have nothing to compare to that is standalone like this scope. It is easy to learn, everything is laid out logically. Only thing is I kind of regret not going for one of the S plus models with waveform/signal generator and 70Mhz upwards. However the 1054 is more than adequate for my needs, though I don’t ever work with the kind of signals you work with.

Apologies, the following links take you to the UK Rigol distributor.

https://www.rigol-uk.co.uk/product/rig ... illoscope/
https://www.rigol-uk.co.uk/product/rig ... mso-ready/
Oh that's nice.. 4 channels.. we I still have time to cancel my order :) If someone convinces me to. But the $100 off seemed like a steal.

Is 4 channels handy in synth / audio level development? EDIT: oh that ds1054z scope is $418 here in the states.
User avatar
Barm Cake
Common Wiggler
Posts: 215
Joined: Wed Nov 17, 2021 3:02 pm
Location: Scotland

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by Barm Cake »

JenniferG wrote: Wed Nov 23, 2022 4:01 pm
Barm Cake wrote: Wed Nov 23, 2022 3:58 pm I got a Rigol DS1054z with software bundle included. I think it has a memory depth of 24Mpts. It’s my first proper scope so I have nothing to compare to that is standalone like this scope. It is easy to learn, everything is laid out logically. Only thing is I kind of regret not going for one of the S plus models with waveform/signal generator and 70Mhz upwards. However the 1054 is more than adequate for my needs, though I don’t ever work with the kind of signals you work with.

Apologies, the following links take you to the UK Rigol distributor.

https://www.rigol-uk.co.uk/product/rig ... illoscope/
https://www.rigol-uk.co.uk/product/rig ... mso-ready/
Oh that's nice.. 4 channels.. we I still have time to cancel my order :) If someone convinces me to. But the $100 off seemed like a steal.

Is 4 channels handy in synth / audio level development? EDIT: oh that ds1054z scope is $418 here in the states.
I will use two maybe three channels at a push when trouble shooting. It’s really useful using it with the Sensepeek probes tracing multiple points at once on the pcb. That Siglent scope looks good though and a good price :tu:
User avatar
emmaker
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 1077
Joined: Sat Mar 10, 2012 5:07 pm
Location: PDX

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by emmaker »

If you are really serious about making electronics your hobby spend a few more bucks to get something that you can grow into. Just don't haul it out and use it when you have problems either. Get it out, use it and learn it. Go through working circuits doing measurements and looking at stuff to see how things work and to hone your skills. Look at some of the tutorials the big boys (Tek, Keysight, LaCroy, Rohde & Schwarz) have. They have everything from basic to advanced ones.

Biggest issue with dealing with digital scopes is aliasing. So you need to pay attention to the sample rate relative to the signal you are looking at.

The Rigol 1XXX series is popular with a lot of DIYers. I have a DS1054Z and it's OK, not the quality of the Tek scopes I used at work but still very functional. It's real nice to have waveform capture, bus decode and measurements built into a scope, it makes things really easy.

I'd just go the various places that sell the scopes and look at the reviews and see what is best for you.

If you are going to do digital trouble shooting I would recommend a 4 channel scope (unless you have some form of logic analyzer) and 100MHz bandwidth. Most of these scopes now days have built in serial bus decode for I2C, SPI and async serial, maybe CAN/CAN FD and LIN but usually not I2S. So having the 4 channels is good for SPI (CLK, MOSI, MISO, SELECT) decoding. If you are really hard core you can down load the acquisitions using VISA and write your own I2S decoder SW.

Also keep in mind that oscilloscopes in general are used more for trouble shooting than measurements. These scopes only use 8 bit ADCs so that limits the accuracy. You can get good measurements but there are certain things you need to be aware of. To get decent voltage measurements get as much of a waveform as you can on screen (dynamic range). Use the channel offset and the variable gain to do that. For example if you have a signal that is only taking up 1/4 of the screen vertically you are down to measuring with 6 bits. So making the signal as big as possible gives you all 8 bits. For time based measurements get the scope setup to have a signal that has as much as needed into the acquisition buffer. For example (I'll assume that the acquisition buffer is dynamically allocated, so if 1 channel is used the whole buffer is used on that channel) for a frequency measurement set the scope up so the whole buffer is used and only capture 2-3 wave forms. That way the sample delta time will be small and give better timing resolution.
JenniferG
Ultra Wiggler
Posts: 969
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2016 5:26 pm

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by JenniferG »

I cancelled the order. Looks like I am some research to do. I want 4 channels now. :)
Yeah I plan on toying with it a lot.. learning the ins and outs.. seems like a lot of fun.

Can I get a scoe with 12 bit adc? Or dare I say 16 bit?
User avatar
emmaker
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 1077
Joined: Sat Mar 10, 2012 5:07 pm
Location: PDX

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by emmaker »

JenniferG wrote: Wed Nov 23, 2022 4:24 pm Can I get a scoe with 12 bit adc? Or dare I say 16 bit?
Yes but they'll probably cost you about 2/3 years of play money.

These are soooo nice.

https://www.tek.com/en/products/oscillo ... dQQAvD_BwE
User avatar
Barm Cake
Common Wiggler
Posts: 215
Joined: Wed Nov 17, 2021 3:02 pm
Location: Scotland

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by Barm Cake »

emmaker wrote: Wed Nov 23, 2022 4:36 pm
JenniferG wrote: Wed Nov 23, 2022 4:24 pm Can I get a scoe with 12 bit adc? Or dare I say 16 bit?
Yes but they'll probably cost you about 2/3 years of play money.
:eek: You weren’t exaggerating!
JenniferG
Ultra Wiggler
Posts: 969
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2016 5:26 pm

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by JenniferG »

Barm Cake wrote: Wed Nov 23, 2022 3:58 pm I got a Rigol DS1054z with software bundle included. I think it has a memory depth of 24Mpts. It’s my first proper scope so I have nothing to compare to that is standalone like this scope. It is easy to learn, everything is laid out logically. Only thing is I kind of regret not going for one of the S plus models with waveform/signal generator and 70Mhz upwards. However the 1054 is more than adequate for my needs, though I don’t ever work with the kind of signals you work with.

Apologies, the following links take you to the UK Rigol distributor.

https://www.rigol-uk.co.uk/product/rig ... illoscope/
https://www.rigol-uk.co.uk/product/rig ... mso-ready/
I've been looking into the DS1054z and seems like a great deal. Really popular and well the new ones come with all serial decoding, triggers and even 100Mhz unlocked.. no more license keys to buy. So if you dont' have 100mhz unlocked on yours you can probably contact Rigol for a firmware update or whatever to give you everything?



I think I'll grab this one, same as yours. Deep memory, 4 channel, 100mhz, serial decoding and all triggers.. $418
User avatar
guest
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 8304
Joined: Mon Aug 19, 2013 11:49 am

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by guest »

ive used the siglent stuff, and am impressed with what you get for the money (the UI kinda sucks, though). its rare i need 4 channels, and you can sometimes use a second scope to get those extra channels, particularly if it has an external trig input. i think if i were to buy a scope these days, id either get a siglent or a used HP megazoom off ebay. typically i encourage people to buy something inexpensive for their first purchase of any tool, then see what they like/dislike about it, how they are actually going to use it, etc, then invest in something nice if it seems like thats necessary. nine times out of ten you can get it done with the cheap thing. my first set of turntables were these horrible gemini deals, but i played many fun sets on them before getting some technics. the funny bit was that i had to completely relearn how to dj on the technics as the geminis required some odd techniques to make them do what i wanted them to.
openmusiclabs.com
User avatar
Barm Cake
Common Wiggler
Posts: 215
Joined: Wed Nov 17, 2021 3:02 pm
Location: Scotland

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by Barm Cake »

That’s good to know regarding the upgrade. Thanks for letting me know. You won’t regret the 1054z.
User avatar
pugix
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 4493
Joined: Sat Oct 31, 2009 7:23 am
Location: Asheville, NC
Contact:

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by pugix »

I got this one.

https://www.tequipment.net/Rigol/DS1102 ... lloscopes/

It's fine for my basic DIY work. But I wish I had bought a 4-channel model.
Richard
https://www.pugix.com

FS (US) Original Clouds with extra panel - $189

"I confess that I'm scarcely using it, because I've got too many modules." -- ferran
User avatar
The Peasant
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 393
Joined: Thu Sep 10, 2009 1:33 pm
Location: Sunny Alberta
Contact:

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by The Peasant »

Like many here, I also have the Rigol DS1054z and am reasonably happy with it. Yes, the resolution isn't as good as I'd like, the screen can be a bit slow to update, and it has a few minor annoyances like not keeping the trigger point on the same position when changing the timebase setting, but it's definitely quite usable for my needs. I almost always use at least three of the four channels, so I highly recommend a four channel scope. However, I am mostly using the scope for design work, so your needs might vary.

Before I retired I was using high quality Tektronix scopes at work, and they are absolutely fantastic tools. But since they cost about as much as a small car, I could never afford one for home use.

Take care,
Doug
The Electronic Peasant

www.electronicpeasant.com
User avatar
devinw1
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 3273
Joined: Tue Aug 07, 2018 11:20 am
Location: Portland, OR
Contact:

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by devinw1 »

I've been designing analog (and a little digital) synth modules for years now using only the Rigol DS1054Z and never felt like I needed a new scope....ok, maybe a little nicer and bigger LCD display would be nice but not essential. It's a great unit!

IMO, you'd have to be crazy, or just have way more dollars than sense to start with a $20,000 digital touch Tektronix unit!

Oh, and I LOVE the Rigol branded probes. They are nice and slender, and the hook on the end will actually clip onto 1/8 cables. I've bought many cheaper probes off Amazon and always end up ditching them for the more expensive Rigol probe (about $60 each IIRC).
JenniferG
Ultra Wiggler
Posts: 969
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2016 5:26 pm

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by JenniferG »

devinw1 wrote: Wed Nov 23, 2022 5:03 pm I've been designing analog (and a little digital) synth modules for years now using only the Rigol DS1054Z and never felt like I needed a new scope....ok, maybe a little nicer and bigger LCD display would be nice but not essential. It's a great unit!

IMO, you'd have to be crazy, or just have way more dollars than sense to start with a $20,000 digital touch Tektronix unit!

Oh, and I LOVE the Rigol branded probes. They are nice and slender, and the hook on the end will actually clip onto 1/8 cables. I've bought many cheaper probes off Amazon and always end up ditching them for the more expensive Rigol probe (about $60 each IIRC).
Does the DS1054Z come with the RIgol probes you like? Or would I have buy them as well? Okay guessign it doesn't come with a probe.. I'll have to look :)
User avatar
The Peasant
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 393
Joined: Thu Sep 10, 2009 1:33 pm
Location: Sunny Alberta
Contact:

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by The Peasant »

It comes with four of those good quality probes included.

Take care,
Doug
The Electronic Peasant

www.electronicpeasant.com
JenniferG
Ultra Wiggler
Posts: 969
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2016 5:26 pm

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by JenniferG »

The Peasant wrote: Wed Nov 23, 2022 5:12 pm It comes with four of those good quality probes included.

Take care,
Doug
Awesome! Sounds like a steal for $418.
Synthiq
Ultra Wiggler
Posts: 868
Joined: Mon Feb 06, 2017 3:10 pm
Location: California

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by Synthiq »

It isn't unusual that oscilloscopes has a high resolution mode that can expand the 8 bit resolution to 11 or 12 bits at lower sampling rates so that is something to look for if 12 bits is important. The Rigol HDO1000 series of scopes claim true 12-bit resolution and 16 bits in high resolution mode with prices varying from $699 to $1,699.

When probing digital signals the oscilloscope rise times is often more important than the bandwidth, even if they are related. A 100MHz oscilloscope for instance has a 3.5ns rise time so that should be compared to the signals to be measured. For the measured rise time to be reasonable accurate, the oscilloscope rise time should be less than half of the signal rise time.

Long memories helps to avoid aliasing as it allows higher sampling rates at lower sweep rates. It also allows you to sample long intervals that can be zoomed with good detail. That said, I have an older scope with 100k standard memory that can be expanded to 1M but I rarely, if ever, actually need to use the 1M option so I don't think this is the most important factor.

Personally I prefer oscilloscopes that have separate gain and offset control for each channel but that seems to become rare these days.
User avatar
devinw1
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 3273
Joined: Tue Aug 07, 2018 11:20 am
Location: Portland, OR
Contact:

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by devinw1 »

JenniferG wrote: Wed Nov 23, 2022 5:10 pm
devinw1 wrote: Wed Nov 23, 2022 5:03 pm I've been designing analog (and a little digital) synth modules for years now using only the Rigol DS1054Z and never felt like I needed a new scope....ok, maybe a little nicer and bigger LCD display would be nice but not essential. It's a great unit!

IMO, you'd have to be crazy, or just have way more dollars than sense to start with a $20,000 digital touch Tektronix unit!

Oh, and I LOVE the Rigol branded probes. They are nice and slender, and the hook on the end will actually clip onto 1/8 cables. I've bought many cheaper probes off Amazon and always end up ditching them for the more expensive Rigol probe (about $60 each IIRC).
Does the DS1054Z come with the RIgol probes you like? Or would I have buy them as well? Okay guessign it doesn't come with a probe.. I'll have to look :)
First off, i'm an idiot...i have the DS1102E. I still love it. It's a little older but is 100Mhz vs 50MHz.

ANYWAY, yes mine came with the Rigol probe and I think mostly they do come with 2 (or 4 if it's the 4 ch).

They do break sometimes if you use them alot like I do, so that's why I had bought a replacement and disliked some of the other brands.
User avatar
ShedSynth
Common Wiggler
Posts: 98
Joined: Sun Apr 11, 2021 9:08 am
Location: Cambridge UK
Contact:

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by ShedSynth »

Whatever scope you get, keep the Tektronix handy.
A digital scope can only show a succession of traces of single events, usually refreshed much slower than the timebase, so you might miss subtleties in a constantly changing audio waveform that a CRT scope would show clearly.
SHEDSYNTH - home-knitted eurorack
JenniferG
Ultra Wiggler
Posts: 969
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2016 5:26 pm

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by JenniferG »

Tempted to get the following 4 channel Gwinstek GDS-1054B:


It has 1 GSa/s per each of the four channels. It also has 10Mpt per channel. Also each of the 4 channels has its own controls. I heard this scope used to cost a lot more but they reduced their prices. It's only $414. I guess it has 8 to 12 bit ADC on each channel? Instead of sharing one ADC like the Rigol DS1054Z does. I believe the Sigilient SDS1104X-E has two ADC, each shared by a pair of channels.

I wonder how the GW Instek performs vs. the 1054B. Read the Rigol is a bit slow.

I need to see what FFT / Math functions the Gwinstek has along with triggering & serial decoding (I2C, SPI, CAN etc.) [All this stuff is so new to me.. just learning about the different scopes.]
JenniferG
Ultra Wiggler
Posts: 969
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2016 5:26 pm

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by JenniferG »

Been hard to decide between the three.. the more I am researching this I leaning towards the Siglent SDS1104X-E. It for sure has two ADCs and 1GSa/s per pair of ports. It's really fast as well. They are all good though. This Siglent is $100 more though at $499 which is okay with me.

Thanks for all the help.
Synthiq
Ultra Wiggler
Posts: 868
Joined: Mon Feb 06, 2017 3:10 pm
Location: California

Re: Which digital storage scope would you recommend?

Post by Synthiq »

The Gwinstek GDS-1054B manual doesn't mention a high resolution mode so assume it doesn't exist. Serial bus decode function (DS1B-BUS) is listed under Optional Function Modules so you probably have to pay extra for this function.
Post Reply

Return to “Music Tech DIY”